Special Flyover at Spring Training Home Opener
February 28, 2013 – The excitement of seeing the Yankees take the field for the first time each spring is generally preceded by on on-field ceremony, which adds to the already special day.
Moments before the Yankees played their first game of 2013 at George M. Steinbrenner Field in Tampa on Sunday February 24, the crowd got an up-close look at a fixed wing HC-130 Hercules aircraft and two HH-60 Jayhawk helicopters.
The United States Coast Guard plane and two choppers flew over the ballpark at an altitude of less than 1,000 feet.
From my vantage point in front of the first base dugout, it appeared as if the plane was barely above the roof of the stadium, and it made for a very impressive spectacle. As the plane and helicopters approached from the third base side of the ballpark, I could read just about all of the words on the belly and sides of the plane. In comparison to many of the flyovers I’ve seen at Yankee Stadium, this one was unique.
Even for the veteran players, who watched the Coast Guard aircrafts from the first base line, the altitude — or lack there of — was eye catching.
“That surprised me,” said David Wells, who serves as a spring training instructor. “I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything like that. It certainly got our attention, and it was very cool.”
–Alfred Santasiere III